"Some calls it madness...I calls it HiDeeHo." - Cab Calloway
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Wednesday, June 30, 2004


They are a bit out of order, and most of them are huge, so they might be kind of slow.

Isle of Arran

Cerne Abbas




Corfe Castle

posted by Julie Neff  # 6/30/2004 12:09:00 PM

Tuesday, June 29, 2004


Well Bielinski, I thought you might be a decent corporate landlord, but alas you prove me wrong.

They would not remove the 1 extra month of my lease I had asked for back in November. I asked because I wasn't sure when we could move, or where, and wanted a cushion of time. I said back then, can I tack on an extra month to this 6-month term I have now? They said, sure; they did NOT explain, however, that it would become a permanent term of my lease. Then in April I ask, can I take that extra month off now? I don't need it after all; let's make it the usual 6-month term. They say, no. I say, we have to move at the end of May. They say, tough titty, you should have thought of that in November, and by the way we're keeping that deposit, even though your place was in near-perfect condition when you moved out.

So a note to those who might be considering renting or building with Bielinski - DON'T. They are absolutely inflexible and tyrannical when it comes to terms of lease and money. Their response to maintenance calls is slow. They are guaranteed to be ruining swamp, meadow, forest and family farm habitat to build new apartments, condos and houses for burgeoning bedroom community humans. Grr.

Sour grapes? Sure. But who wouldn't get angsty when a sizable chunk of cash is withheld from an individual by a big corporation? Heromaker Murphy knows about this. In my case, it's because of greed and inflexibility and not errors, and it was $655, but still...

AAAARGH! Take your breach of lease and shove it up your ass, Bielinski.

All right, I'm done.

posted by Julie Neff  # 6/29/2004 02:41:00 PM


Yes, back, settled, laundry done, mail picked up, old landlords thoroughly lambasted (mmm...basted lamb), cable bill thoroughly screwed up...and pictures!

Pictures are coming shortly. The upload process is slow, and you all know how much I love (read: LOATHE) sitting in front of a computer on gorgeous summer days, or any other days for that matter. Let it suffice to say, they will be in sections of: Swanage, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Arran and Cerne Abbas. Four disposable cameras' worth, yo.

For the chronicle of the trip in general, see Goblin Cartoons. You know how. My site will have the images; Josh's, the words.

Many thanks to Joan and Rachel for putting us up and putting up with us. Oh, and Missy the Jack Russell terrier who has yet to learn...

Our backyard is being filled in, slowly but surely. Now it's a nice, level pile of topsoil. The birds are loving it.

You never really appreciate how strong your own regional accent is until you've gone abroad and come back to it. EVERYONE in Mukwonago sounds like some variation on Coach Z to my ears. Well, except Jorsh, Meargin, and me.


A lot of the time I was in Britain, I would try to convince myself that I lived there, that all this new stuff was old hat to me; that I knew every wildflower, bird and tree already; had made the trip between, say, Birmingham and Edinburgh many times already. (who is queen of the run-on?) It softened the shock of actually being there. I had a hard time believing it without that little game. Often, especially in bed at night, Josh or I would say, "Guess what? We're in fucking EDINBURGH!" Or Glasgow, or wherever we happened to be that night. For someone who waited 30 years to go abroad, the experience that could have been stale quickly never faded with these 180-spin perspectives.

Today, on a walk to the grocery store for a few odds and ends, I played the opposite game - that I was from somewhere far away and Mukwonago was entirely new to me. I took note of the landscape, buildings, cars, crops, birds and flora, and saw it all as novel and unexpected.

Mukwonago has an absolutely gorgeous array of yellow, pink, purple, blue and orange wildflowers in profusion about now. Many of the trees look venerable, they're so big and old. It's somewhat damp thanks to the river, lakes and swamps. It's rather flat here as well. Scads of twittery birds. Buggy. Windy. Very midwestern. Corn and wheat fields predominate.

The people seem kind of standoffish and rude, though.

I thought it was just me being disparaging of this place from which I cannot seem to escape, but after being away, I sadly find it to be true - Mukwonagonians are the kind of people who will openly look you up and down and sneer, or question your sanity for walking when there's a perfectly good road to be driven on. (oooh...another run-on!) It's also what someone called "conservative country;" Bush/Cheney signs predominate. I tell ya, I'm running out of spit, there are so many. I've taken to knocking them down when I can. Nyah!

So travel broadens your mind, but only if you let it. To those folks from Des Moines we heard talking outside the Writer's Museum in Scotland - that was not the place, nor the time. You embarrass yourself with your ugly American behavior. Shut your mouths and open your eyes, and you might allow the rest of us to enjoy it.

posted by Julie Neff  # 6/29/2004 07:12:00 AM


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